Disease: Botrytis blight of rosesPathogen: Botrytis cinereaHost: Roses (Rosa spp.)
Roses are without much doubt the favorite flower in most gardens in the U.S.A. A common problem for many gardeners is what often appears to be the early senescence of the blooms of their favorite varieties. Botrytis cinerea is a fungus that can cause the petals to turn brown and the entire flower to appear to 'collapse' almost overnight. It can also cause a twig or blossom blight. In general, try to maintain good air movement around the plants and water the soil beneath the plants rather than wetting the leaves and blossoms. Remove dead and dying tissue promptly since this is often a starting point for the disease. Gardeners whose roses exhibit these symptoms should consult with their local extension agent or garden center for more detailed information on how to minimize this problem.